Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Delicious, Creamy Coconut Milk!!

I recently started a new job and have had to consider tree nut allergies when I am creating in the kitchen for the next day's meals.  If you've seen any of my recipes, you'll probably notice that I use a LOT of tree nuts.  Cashews, almonds, walnuts, pecans... I have many mainstay recipes that require these items.  Not the least of which is my almond milk, which I traditionally use to make overnight oats (my fav!!!).  I enjoy a switching things up and challenging myself to come up with alternatives for things, so I do not view this as a bad thing but rather an opportunity to find new alternatives for my tree nut mainstays.

Enter: coconut milk!
Coconut milk has a really creamy texture which I attribute to the natural oiliness of the coconut flesh you will use to make it.  It's extremely easy to make and there are so many ways to prepare it.  You can even use it to add richness and a hint of coconuttiness to your morning java!

Here's what you need:
1/4 cup raw, unsweetened shredded coconut
1 cup water

Simply soak the coconut in water for at least 15 minutes (longer is better).  Put the coconut and the water you've soaked it in into a blender and blend for at least 2 minutes.  This is where coconut milk differs from traditional nut milks.
1. The coconut flesh doesn't need to soak as long as nuts do to make nut milk.  Preparation time for coconut milk is minimal.
2. You do not need to discard the water you soak the coconut in, blend the coconut flesh in the same water you soaked it in.

I like to flavour my coconut milk by adding 1 pitted date or a tablespoon of raw honey to sweeten.  I also add 1/2 tsp of cinnamon and a pinch of nutmeg.  You can also toast the coconut before making milk out of it to mix up the flavour a little bit.  There are so many uses for this: I love adding my fresh, home made coconut milk to my morning smoothies!!

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